Bollywood might have been the land of cliches but even in its routine there lies the recipe for success. Undoubtedly the largest film industry in the world that churns out more films than you can ever watch, Bollywood boasts of numerous production houses dotting its every alley. Conveniently located in Mumbai to further the dreams of those seeking to make it big in Bollywood, these production houses are remarkable in their own might. From churning out blockbusters to delivering timeless masterpieces, Bollywood has done it all. Here we list 18 such names that has been instrumental in redefining Indian cinema over the years-
Eros International is a name that’s big not just in Bollywood but also elsewhere. Listed in the Bombay Stock Exchange as well as the London Stock Exchange, this production house has been going strong for more than four decades now since it was established in 1977.
Founded by Arjun Lulla and now looked after by Kishre Lulla and Sunil Lulla, Eros has churned out some of the biggest blockbusters of Bollywood. Be it the iconic Mr India or the path breaking Rockstar, the love saga Dil Se or the laugh riot Housefull and a host of films, each bigger than the other, this is one production house without which Bollywood would never be the same. What’s more, with its worldwide dominance, Eros International releases films under its banner not only in India but also in 50 other countries which explains why most of its ventures manage to rake in the moolah every time.
Yash Raj Films
In the world of film production in India, there’s perhaps no name as revered as Yash Raj Films when it comes to being a big banner. Founded by the legendary Yash Chopra in 1970, the name sake banner is one of the largest and most successful among the production houses in Mumbai.
The most iconic of Bollywood films belted out by Yash Raj has to be the epic love story Dilwale Dulhaniya Le Jayenge starring Shah Rukh Khan and Kajol as the leads. Not only is DDLJ one of the biggest blockbusters ever in Hindi cinema but it is also one of the only three Bollywood movies that found mention in the reference book 1001 Movies You Must See Before You Die. The 43rd National Film Award winner has also been placed twelfth on the British Film Institute’s list of top Indian films of all time. What’s more, not only was DDLJ prominent in the Yash Raj Films repertoire as the most successful of its ventures but it also marked the directorial debut of Yash Chopra’s son and the now CEO of the company, Aditya Chopra.
YRF is also the name behind one very popular franchise in Indian cinema- with the Dhoom trilogy dishing out three blockbuster movies one after the other. YRF’s latest venture, the action thriller War also recorded the highest-opening day collection for a Bollywood film in India when it released in 2019. Undoubtedly, with a bunch of records and a slew of accolades, Yash Raj Films is the name that matters to make it big in Bollywood.
A name that is instantly recognised in the Hindi film circuit in India is the legendary Dharma Productions now owned by Karan Johar. Set up by his father Yash Johar in 1979, the junior Johar has ensured that he keeps intact the legacy and credibility of Dharma Productions as one of the notable names among the production companies in India.
Starting out with the 1981 film Dostana which was the highest Bollywood grosser of the year, Dharma Productions has churned out hits consistently. Be it Karan’s directorial debut Kuch Kuch Hota Hai or his other K picks (er not Korean but with K initials) Kabhi Khushi Kabhie Gham, Kal Ho Naa Ho, Kabhi Alvida Naa Kehna and some really credible outings with the coming-of-age Wake Up Sid or Dear Zindagi, My Name is Khan, Yeh Jawaani Hai Deewani or even the Alia Bhatt debut Student of the Year and her exemplary outing Raazi, Dharma Productions have hit the jackpot with each of its productions.
Viacom 18 is not only one of the biggest production houses in Mumbai but is also one of the first studio model based motion picture & content production business in India. Apart from hits like Boss, Bhaag Milkha Bhaag, Toilet: Ek Prem Katha, Viacom has also produced the National Award winner Andhadhun as well as critically acclaimed films like Margarita With A Straw and Drishyam.
UTV Motion Pictures Ltd
UTV Motion Pictures Ltd headed by Siddharth Roy Kapoor is one of those production houses in Mumbai that has it big not just in the Indian film industry but also in the whole of southeast Asia. Since 1996, UTV has been churning out some really path breaking films, from Swades to Rang De Basanti, Life in a … Metro to Barfi, Fashion, Delhi Belly, Haider, Dangal and others.
Churning out the perfect family entertainers since decades, Rajshri Productions is a name in the Hindi film circuit that traces its roots way back to 1947. Some of the biggest hits of the late 90’s and the early 2000s owe their fame to this production company in Mumbai. The two film Vivah franchisee, Salman Khan’s debut as lead in Maine Pyar Kiya, the biggest blockbuster of the modern era in Hum Aapke Hain Koun, the 2015 Prem Ratan Dhan Payo are some of the biggest names that have been churned out under this banner.
Red Chillies Entertainment
If there’s one jack of all trades who is also the master of some then it has to be Bollywood Badshah Shah Rukh Khan. Be it his comedy or his romance, as the dark anti- hero or the adorable host, SRK is second to none. No wonder his production company Red Chillies Entertainment is also one of the best in business. With blockbusters like Main Hoon Na, Om Shanti Om, Chennai Express, Happy New Year in its kitty, Red Chillies Entertainment has firmly established SRK’s exploits on and off screen.
Vinod Chopra Productions Pvt Ltd
Bollywood would have forever remained incomplete if it did not move away from the glitz and glamour of the times to also seek resort in heart warming and enriching cinematic experiences. With films like Munna Bhai M.B.B.S. and Lage Raho Munnabhai, Parineeta, 3 Idiots, P.K., Vinod Chopra Productions Ltd. did a lot to radically change the film scene prevailing in the country. Bearing some of the finest manifestations of modern day Bollywood, the banner claims prominence as one among the finer and bigger production houses in Mumbai.
The opulence of the larger than life sets, the exclusivity of the visuals, the elaborate attention to detail that maverick Bollywood director Sanjay Leela Bhansali lends to each of his magnum opus in Bollywood would surely need him to develop a production company of his own. With Bhansali Productions, the ace filmmaker executes with perfection each of his vision, translating them into larger than life experiences on the silver screen that leaves audience in awe of his brilliance. If you have been party to his cinematic ventures like Padmaavat, Bajirao Mastani and Goliyon Ki Raasleela: Ram- Leela, you would understand the grandeur inhibiting films produced by Bhansali.
A company helmed by Bollywood’s coolest duo Farhan Akhtar and Ritesh Sidhwani, Excel Entertainment has strived to deliver films that make an impact since their beginning exactly two decades back. Starting out with the coming of age Dil Chahta Hai, Excel has continues with its stride of excellence through movies like Lakshya and Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara. This is undoubtedly a banner you can rely on to deliver some really hard hitting films that comes loaded also with wholesome entertainment. Excel Entertainment not only hit the jackpot but also made it matter with its latest production Gully Boy as the film is the official Indian entry for the 92nd Academy Awards.
Fox Star Studios
Owned by the Walt Disney Company, Fox Star Studios is one of the production houses from Hollywood to have expanded its establishment with a strong foothold in Mumbai. The greatest venture under Fox Star Studios is the multiple BAFTA and Academy Award winning 2008 film Slumdog Millionaire. Its repertoire of films also include critically acclaimed names like CityLights, Stanley ka Dabba, Jolly LLB as well as commercially success films like M. S. Dhoni: The Untold Story.
Vishesh Films is a name that is known for producing titillating romantic movies that appeal to the die- hard romantics in us. Weepy love stories like the Aashiqui movies or Tum Mile and the romantic thriller Murder trilogy and similar ventures with Raaz, Jism etc has ensured Vishesh Films thrive among the production houses in Mumbai as one that delivers small budget commercial hits. Set up by director duo Mahesh Bhatt- Mukesh Bhatt in 1986, the banner has managed to deliver some really big names in Bollywood.
Balaji Motion Pictures
The reigning czar of the small screen, Ekta Kapoor’s exploits in Bollywood are no less phenomenal. Set up in 2001, her production company Balaji Motion Pictures have successfully delivered films that has earned critical as well as commercial acclaim. Be it earnest outings like Lootera and The Dirty Picture or the masala driven Ragini MMS or Main Tera Hero, or the bigger Half Girlfriend and Veere Di Wedding or even Ek Villain for that matter, Kapoor’s cinematic ventures have been a sea of myriad choices.
Aamir Khan Productions
The perfectionist in Bollywood that he is, trust Aamir Khan to come up with his own production company and deliver from the very word go! Under his namesake banner, Khan struck gold with his very first film, the Oscars nominated Lagaan in 2000. Thereafter, Khan went on to produce equally riveting, colossal films like Taare Zameen Par, Dangal, Peepli Live, Dhobi Ghat and also the very relatable entertainer Jaane Tu Ya Jaane Na. Encompassing his array of perfection is Aamir Khan’s namesake production house that makes it easily among the best production houses in Mumbai.
Anurag Kashyap Films Pvt Ltd
Among the names in Bollywood that instantly appeal to you with their ingenuity and refusal to cater to the norms is Anurag Kashyap. The prolific filmmaker is known for his obsession with all things dark and gore and makes cinema that dwells more on the medium as an art rather than as just a means to entertain. With his own production company Anurag Kashyap Films Pvt Ltd that he established in 2005, the director worked upon his entirely content- driven, out of the box, thought- provoking films to weave a different genre of magic in Bollywood. In fact his epoch making 2012 directorial venture Gangs of Wasseypur is the only Indian film to make it to Guardian’s list of the 100 Best Films of the 21st century.
Nadiadwala Grandson Entertainment Pvt Ltd
Three generations of the Nadiadwalas have been producing films since close to five decades now under their eponymous production company Nadiadwala Grandson Entertainment Pvt Ltd. Acing the last decade of the 1900’s with the blockbuster comedy Judwaa, the Nadiadwalas continued their success in the new millennium with Har Dil Jo Pyaar Karega, Mujhse Shaadi Karoge, Heyy Baby, 2 States, Kick and a host of other films to their credit.
Reliance Big Entertainment
Reliance is one name that you will encounter everywhere you set your eyes on. From electronics to apparels, sports and gaming to music and movies, Reliance has covered it all. With Reliance Big Entertainment, the Reliance trademark has been extended to Bollywood and has sure overtaken many others in the business to be one of the leading production houses in Mumbai.
Shree Ashtavinayak Cine Vision Ltd
Another of the production companies in Mumbai that has given Bollywood some of its greatest hits is the Shree Asthavinayak Cine Vision Ltd founded in 2001. Blockbuster franchisees like Golmaal and Dabangg, as well as hit names like Jab We Met, Maine Pyaar Kyun Kiya have been produced under this banner.